CHICAGO – April 9, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today delivered the keynote address at the 2nd Annual Sustainable Schools Symposium at Walter Payton College Prep. Governor Quinn was joined by officials from the U.S. Department of Education and Chicago Public Schools in declaring the month of April “Earth Month” and presenting Environmental Hero Awards.
“We’ve come a long way in protecting precious natural resources and making our state ‘green’ but we can’t stop now. We must continue this important effort by recognizing that every month is Earth Month,” said Governor Quinn. “By working together, we can teach today’s youth the importance of conservation and creating a sustainable environment now and in the future.”
Participants from across Illinois – including school administrators, superintendents, school board members, custodial staff, teachers, government officials and high school student environmental leaders – gathered at the daylong symposium in Chicago to exchange ideas that will enhance and promote green practices in K-12 schools.
The symposium is hosted by the Illinois Green Governments Coordinating Council in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council Chicago Chapter and Chicago Public Schools, and features presentations from local, state, and federal policy-makers, educators, green businesses and non-profits. Workshops cover a variety of topics aimed at giving participants ideas for making schools across Illinois green. Green school construction and renovation, energy usage in the classroom, environmental education and health, and ways to finance sustainability projects are just some of the areas that were discussed.
Governor Quinn also issued a proclamation declaring April as “Earth Month” in Illinois. Throughout the month, various state agencies will hold events and programs aimed at educating the public about the importance of environmentalism and conserving natural resources. Details about those events will be released in the coming weeks.
Governor Quinn serves as the chairman of the Great Lakes Commission, the Illinois River Coordinating Council and the Illinois Green Governments Coordinating Council. Governor Quinn has also signed numerous Executive Orders and statutes into law to ensure greater energy efficiency, use of renewable energy, and protection of Illinois’ land, air and water resources. For more information about Governor Quinn’s sustainability initiatives, please visit www.Green.Illinois.gov.